06 July 2020

Our First Winner, and Her Easter Basket

Hello all - Well, July is taking itself very seriously, at least here in Philadelphia, where it is ridiculously hot and supposed to become hotter and more humid as the week goes on.  Ick.

I am happy to announce our first winner for Christmas in July 2020:

steph!!!!

One of her funniest holiday memories was this:

i was an only child...so it was a big deal to visit cousins on holidays. We all got up early one Easter morning, only to have my youngest cousin announce to all 5 of us...you can't eat your candy because I licked it all, and it's covered with my cooties, so it's all MINE. This didn't bother me at all....she left my Easter basket alone, because it was full of black olives, cottage cheese, and cocktail onions. The Easter bunny knew me well; and I had never thought of my Easter haul as unusual until that Easter morning. (Boy, did Cousin Jane get a lickin' for her antics, though.)

A fun little trip down memory lane!


I loved this answer on so many levels - not just her cousin "getting hers," so to speak, but also the contents of her Easter basket.  So many people would not be willing to give their kids the things they actually liked, because they weren't the usual chocolate bunnies, jellybeans, etc.  Congratulations, Steph!  To claim your prize, please send an e-mail to: thekittyknitterATverizonDOTnet, with your name, address, zip, etc., and I can get the package ready to send.

As for my answer, one of my funniest memories is from a Christmas dinner.  My parents went all out at Christmastime (which is probably why we were so poor the rest of the year), and would always kind of collect extra people to come to Christmas dinner, which in our house was on Christmas Eve.  One year, it was the first time my father's Uncle Bill and his wife Aunt Viola were on their own for the holidays, as both of their adult daughters had moved to California.  So my parents decided to invite them to come and join us. 

A bit of background:  Uncle Bill was well known as being really really cheap, and my father used to always say that "he was so cheap, he wouldn't pay a nickel to see Christ jump off the cross."  (!)  Aunt Viola was an amazing cook but whenever you went to their house, the servings were always incredibly tiny - so we all used to wonder, was she really that good of a cook, or were we just always hungry when we got home because there wasn't enough food ...

Anyway, when my mother called to invite them, Aunt Viola asked what she should bring.  My mother said to bring something that they always have for Christmas dinner that they would miss by not eating at home.  Aunt Viola said she would bring some of her homemade noodles. 

Well.  HOMEMADE NOODLES!!  We were in heaven, waiting for that goodness, as my mother never made homemade anything, and we talked about those stupid noodles most of the day in anticipation.  When dinnertime came, everyone was around the table, and just as we all had our plates full, and everyone started to eat, Aunt Viola asked my mother where the homemade noodles were.  My mother responded, "Oh my God, things were so hectic, I put the bag on the table, and then forgot to make them at all!," to which Aunt Viola said that was too bad, but she guessed she would just take them home with her after dinner.  (Meaning we would never actually taste said noodles, ever.)

Only later in the evening when all the guests were gone did we get the actual story.  I guess when my mother talked to Aunt Viola on the phone, she said she would bring homemade noodles because "we always have them at Christmas, and [Uncle] Bill loves them."  So when they arrived she handed my mother a small plastic bag with the homemade noodles in them.  As in, ONE SERVING - for Uncle Bill!  Because you know, he loved them!  Both of my parents said there was no way they were cooking something that had only one serving and then giving it to a single person to enjoy.  (Needless to say, it was said in much more colorful terms at the time.)

As you can imagine, this is the stuff of family lore.  Uncle Bill and Aunt Viola never joined us for Christmas - or any holiday dinner - ever again, because for a few years their daughters' sent them plane tickets to visit, and eventually they moved to California to live near them.

So the next time someone offers to bring something for a meal, you may want to ask them about the number of servings ... 😂

03 July 2020

Friday FOs - Two, Count 'Em, Two!

Before I completely melt today and lose all interest in anything, I have two finished objects for you - yes TWO.  Granted, neither one was a major undertaking, but they are still both finished, and that counts!

First up, the shortie slipper socks I knit for The Tim:


Project:  Same Mother Shortie Socks
Pattern:  Just a plain sock, turned into a shortie sock
Yarn:  Plymouth Encore Worsted Solids, in the Oatmeal, Purple, and Orange colorways
Needles:  US size 5
Notes:  As you know if you have read my blog for a few weeks at least, I knitted the first sock, and then strongly suspected that I would not have enough of the Oatmeal colored yarn to complete the second one.  For some people, that would mean they would take apart sock #1 and do some color-blocking.  I'm not those people, and because I had not thought ahead, I warned The Tim that his socks would not match and why.  He said, "Well, if you have to throw in another color, make sure it's something that pops." And I think the orange definitely pops, right??  Anyway, these were really quick to knit, and since they are just meant to be slipper socks, it didn't bother me that they wouldn't be the same.  I called them "Same Mother Shortie Socks" because they are like family members who have the same mother, and look similar but different.  😀

The best part was that when they were finished, The Tim was *thrilled* with them, so all's well that ends well.

*****

Next up, something for the kitchen:


Project:  Leftovers Kitchen Towel
Pattern:  At Your Service Knit Cloth (a free pattern)
Yarn:  Knit Picks ColLin, in the Conch colorway
Needles:  US size 7
Modifications:  None
Notes:  I had some yarn left from my Down the Shore Shawl, and decided to give this pattern a try, since we use these kinds of hanging towels in our kitchen all the time and they are not that easy to find in stores.  The pattern was overall easy and pretty quick to knit, but in my heat-addled brain, it did take me a few times to get the decreases right.  In the end, it turned out just fine, and I see many more of these in my future.  The Tim thinks they would be nice Christmas gifts, but I'm not sure that people would enjoy that kind of gift.  Then again they might.  I'll have to give it some thought.

Both of these projects were from stash yarn, and that always pleases me - the button for the kitchen towel is also from a stash of buttons that I have, so no extra money at all was spent for this project, which is even better! 

******

Before closing, I wanted to remind anyone who is interested that you have until one minute before midnight this coming Sunday, July 5, to comment on this post and be in the mix for a giveaway. 

And finally, tomorrow is Independence Day here in the U.S.  This country is far from perfect, but if we can get back on track, I really believe that things could move forward and we can be what we wanted our country to stand for.  It's still better than lots of other places.  So, if you celebrate, have a lovely day, and remember to VOTE in November!!


And for everyone, I hope you have a good weekend no matter how you decide to spend it.  See you on Monday for the announcement of the giveaway winner.

02 July 2020

Three Wishes

Hello - I hope this finds you well, and not too awfully wilted from the heat.  I hope that any of you who are Canadian had an enjoyable Canada Day yesterday, even if it was a bit toned down. 

Today I've decided to take part in Three on Thursday, and I'm sharing three wishes I have.  Now keep in mind, I do of course wish the virus was gone, and that we had a different president, and that all of us valued each other as much as we would like to be valued - but those are things that I call Big Wishes, and feel that most people have similar things in that category as well.  Instead, I'm sharing three wishes that are either just mine, or that may overlap somewhat with others' wishes.

1.  I wish I didn't have to keep hearing about people's ruined vacations.  Listen, I get it, I know that when you have a vacation planned - whether it's a week off at home, or the trip of a lifetime - it's beyond disappointing to realize that for whatever reason it won't be happening.  But I am SO tired of hearing about how people's trips to Europe or the Caribbean or wherever has had to be cancelled because of Covid-19.  Hearing it one or two times is understandable.  But I know people who have mentioned it every single time they possibly can.  And though I can sympathize, I wish they would realize that for most of us, "vacation" is a few day trips, maybe attached to a long weekend, and that summertime just means being at work like most of the rest of the year because we do not have the leave time or the money to afford a trip anywhere.  So hearing them whine about a summer of lost privilege makes me want to play a tiny violin, if you get my drift.


2.  I wish that people would stop saying that "anyone can grow succulents," because they take no care at all.  Every single time I have had a succulent, whether I love it too much, ignore it altogether, or carefully follow instructions for its care, the plant just dies almost immediately.  I really like a lot of the different ones, but never, ever, has one lived once it's in my possession.  I have met a couple of other people who have had the same experiences, and all of us find it upsetting.  I love having plants, and wish I could make these grow, but apparently where they are concerned, I'm the kiss of death.


3.  I wish I had not watched the last episode of the season of the show "What We Do In the Shadows."  It's one of my favorite shows, and we do re-watch episodes from both seasons, but like most things, seeing them the very first time is always the best.  It's so ridiculous, and doesn't want to do anything but make you laugh.  I mean, just the premise - vampires who live in Staten Island - is enough to make me chuckle whenever I think about it.  The movie that originated it was good too, but the show is just stupid for all the right reasons.  One of the characters is an "energy vampire" and you quickly realize that we all know someone who is just that. 


The Tim and I also find the theme song convenient for so many occasions ... ;-)

Go over to Carole's blog and see what three things everyone else wanted to share!

01 July 2020

Christmas in July 2020 - Week 1


In this year when we seem to especially need something fun, I am particularly happy to see the return of

Christmas in July!!!

and I hope you are as well. 

For anyone new here, or who just needs a reminder of how it all works, here are the details. 

Every Wednesday during July, I will make a post that will show a prize for that week.  In order to be eligible to win said prize, there will be a question or questions to answer, and the comment must be on the post for that week to be considered and must be posted in the comments no later than 11:59 p.m. on the following Sunday.  Winners will be announced on the Monday after.

So let's get started, shall we?

******

First up, here is the prize for Week 1:


Here we have a book that is really kind of a journal for your projects; it's geared towards knitting and crocheting but I'm guessing you could adapt it for your own needs.  Knit Notes : Explore * Design * Create, by Nadine Curtis is a handy item to keep track of things, and with things happening on Ravelry causing people to have migraines, etc., it may be time to use paper and pencil to do that.  I picked this up at the public library's book sale last summer.  It was a whopping $2.00, because the elastic that goes around it was broken off; it's been a year, and I have never picked it up again, so I decided that maybe one of you might want the chance to give it a good home.  What is hard to see in the photo due to my poor photographic skills is that in addition, there are some heart-shaped stitch markers that will come with it. 

Here is the question I would like you to answer to have a chance in the drawing:

What is one of the funniest stories you can remember from a holiday when you were a kid?  It doesn't have to be related to Christmas - it can be from Halloween, Purim, Arbor Day, July 4th - any holiday at all (though you can't say something like, "When I was 5, and my parents celebrated Ladybug Day ..." because even though Ladybug Day sounds awesome, I have never seen it on a calendar).

Please make sure that you leave your comments on this post only, no later than 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 5, 2020.  That way, I will be able to find the comments all in one place.  I will choose a winner through a random number generator and announce it on Monday, July 6, 2020.

******

And here it is, the first of July - what?  Philadelphia was supposed to move into the controlled Green Phase of activities reopening after the stay-at-home orders for Covid-19 this coming Friday, but due to spikes in cases, that is now delayed.  Not surprising, at least not to me, and personally, I'm glad they are working with an abundance of caution.  So Yellow Phase it will be, at least for a bit longer.

Wear a mask, people!!!!  It is seriously the minimum you can do for the rest of us.

29 June 2020

It's Monday, and It's Too Hot, and I'm Already Over It

Not that it matters, of course.  Summer weather is gonna do what it wants, no matter what I care.  It was a pretty awful weekend - heat, major humidity, and mosquito-fest.  In spite of the fact that I practically poured mosquito repellent on my entire person when heading out to water our flowers, those evil creatures feasted as if nothing was different.  Grrrrrrrr.

Which is why other than taking Hamlet out for walks, we both pretty much stayed put.  Things were done around the house, so it wasn't a complete loss, but no real garden time which was disappointing, since that had become a lovely way to spend the mornings.

In the continuing list of things that seem to make the world feel like it's working against us, our oven died a week ago.  The Tim thought that it just needed a part that he could likely install to work again - or at least to buy time - so he ordered it, and spent about an hour trying to install it before realizing that it would mean tearing out part of a wall.  And even then, as mentioned above, it would only be buying us time, since our stove is about 20 years old.  Since like most everyone, we have SO much extra money coming in while not being at work (one of us is laid off, one of us is getting paid 30% less of our salary), we bit the bullet and ordered a new one.  The good part here (and there is one) is that we ordered it from the manufacturer, so not only was it on sale for July 4th, but they had a payment plan where if you paid it off monthly in 12 months, there was no finance charge, so that at least will work out.  Supposedly it will be delivered sometime this week.  That would be nice.

I did finish knitting The Tim's shortie slipper socks, and though they look weird (yes, I did run out of the yarn I was using!) he is thrilled with them.   It's nice when someone goes with the flow like that.  It's also nice when yarn chicken happens on something that you are only going to wear around the house.  😌 I'll do an FO post this week so you can see how they turned out.

I also wound yarn for another project, and got started.  For reasons that even I can't really explain or understand, I decided to try the Stillness Shawl MKL.


Who am I???  I no longer know, apparently.  The first clue came out last Thursday, and yesterday I actually sat down and got going on it.  So far, I have learned the i-cord cast on, which is nice and pretty when it works, but meant that I started over about 8 times before I decided it was OK-looking and moved along.

Here are the yarns I've chosen:

Side view

Top view

Yesterday, while we were watching some things we had recorded, I finally got my cast on to be acceptable to me, and managed by the end of the day to knit ~70 rows.  So far, it's pretty reasonable, with a few rows where you have to pay attention, and then more rows where you just knit or purl, depending what side you are knitting.  

The Tim (when I was trying to get the cast-on to work):  Is that going to be a shawl?
Me:  Yep.  It's a Mystery Knit-Along, you get one clue a week.
The Tim (laughing):  Oh that sounds so exciting.

Half an hour later, after I had a nice amount done:

Me:  See, I'm about halfway through Clue #1, and this is what it looks like.
The Tim:  Oh cool, now I'm invested.

*****
So that's the news from here.  Summer is making itself known, mosquitoes are feasting on my person, I've not only joined a KAL, but have actually started knitting the project, and June is nearly over.  

BUT.

Something is getting ready to start again.


Stay tuned!

26 June 2020

Truth


For those who find this hard to decipher, it says: 

Anyone can slay a dragon, she told me,
but try waking
up every morning
and loving the world
all over again.
That's what
takes a real hero.

Have a good weekend.

24 June 2020

In Which I Surprise and Amaze Myself

On Monday morning, I had appts bright and early for some x-rays and bloodwork, so I put on my mask, sunglasses, and hat, and headed over to the Perelman Center at Penn to do that.  As I was walking over the bridge on the way, it occurred to me that I was more or less traveling incognito, and the best part was that it would make it pretty much impossible for someone to tell me to "smile more."  That made the trip back and forth worth it, even though it was already eleventy hundred degrees at 7:30 a.m.  

Once I got home, I only had a little bit of time before I had to attend an All-Staff meeting via Zoom.  So I decided that since I would be one person on the screen of 100+ people, and no one could see my hands, I would do some knitting.  However, I needed to cast on a project, and I had just enough time before starting to cast on my next pair of socks and get the first couple of rounds knit.  By the time the meeting was over, I'd finished the cuff!  That may have been the most productive meeting I've ever attended.  

Anyway, I was pretty much in the zone, so I just kept going through lunchtime and into the early afternoon.  I am knitting a pair of shortie slipper socks for The Tim using worsted weight yarn, so things were moving along at a nice pace.  By the time I told myself to stop so I wouldn't get sore hands and wrists, I'd finished decreasing for the gusset.  That - for me - is a LOT of progress in a single day.

Yesterday, after I finished what I had to do for work, I thought I'd sit down and do some more work on the sock.  And almost before I could realize what was going on, I had a HO:


I know a lot of you are really fast knitters, so this is no big deal.  And yes, I was knitting a shortie sock on heavier weight yarn - but I have NEVER knit anything at all in just two days!  And to be honest, probably never will again.  I think this was one of those times that the planets were aligned, or my chi or whatever was in balance, but in any case I KNIT A SOCK IN TWO DAYS, PEOPLE!!

The rest of the day was spent being surprised and astonished that I had accomplished such a thing.  Of course, that was short-lived as it occurred to me that I may not have enough yarn to complete the second sock.  Not a huge issue, since they are just to wear around the house, and The Tim won't care, but I'll admit that I'll be disappointed if I can't get a matching sock out of what is left.  It's yarn from my stash, and there's plenty more where that came from - just not the same color.  If I had really given it a lot of thought, I could have done some color-blocking, or even chosen another yarn.  

Such is life.  And I do have to say, the universe certainly seems to enjoy keeping me grounded whenever I get carried away with myself ... ;-)

19 June 2020

Here is a Friday FO!

Hi all - today I have a very happy FO to share with you.


My Down the Shore Shawl is finished - and it's a big one!

Project:  Down the Shore Shawl
Pattern:  Beachcomber, by Chelsea Berkompas
Yarn:  I used the yarn suggested in the pattern, but changed colorways with the blue shade.  All are Knit Picks CotLin, and the colorways are:  Linen (beige), Conch (coral), and Marina (blue).
Needles:  US size 8
Modifications:  As previously mentioned, I changed the shade of blue to Marina (more of a turquoise, a color I love) instead of Surf, which is a lovely blue, but lighter in shade.  I wanted the color to pop more, to make it seem more summery.

(folded in half)

Notes:  I LOVE LOVE LOVE this shawl and this pattern!  It is also going to be the perfect thing for cool summer evenings (if there are any), and/or when the A/C is just making it way too cool as is the case in some places.


This is a fun and easy shawl to knit - mostly garter, but the stripes keep it interesting.  And the occasional lace panel needs you to concentrate, but only shows up three times, and is very straightforward (and I am a crummy lace knitter, so that means most lace knitters would think it was easy).  It goes quickly, because other than the lace, the pattern consists of only 2 pattern rows which are easily memorizable.  I had a lot of fun knitting this one!  It took me longer than it probably should have, for a couple of reasons:  a) there was a 10-day period when I didn't knit on any of my projects, because I just wasn't feeling it, and b) the CotLin could be hard on my hands when I would knit for too long, so at times I needed to take a day off to rest.


Of course, you could knit this in another yarn, but when I saw it, I decided that yes, I wanted a shawl for the summer, and CotLin is very reasonably priced, so it was a no-brainer.

Also, it fulfilled my desire to try and learn new things, as it has a picot bind off, which was a new thing for me.  It took me a few times to get started properly, but once it all clicked in my brain, I really liked it!

When we went out into the garden to take most of these photos, Hamlet had to be sure to remind anyone reading this that he was there as well.  😊


This is a project that just "hit" me when I saw the pattern (and I don't really remember where/how/why I came across it), and I'm glad I just let myself go with the flow and even actually buy some yarn!  It was worth every penny in the end, in that it was pretty inexpensive to knit, and the end result is just how I wanted it to be.


******

Tomorrow is of course the summer solstice here in the northern hemisphere, and I came across a poem the other day that I decided to post on my other blog.  I don't write there as often as here, though I am planning to change that, but in any case I shared the poem there yesterday, because I feel that it is something worth reading, given people's concerns about body types, and particularly wearing a swimsuit.  So I hope if you read it, I hope it gives you something to consider.

Have a wonderful weekend, and if you are someplace where summer is starting, I hope you find a way to keep cool!

15 June 2020

There Were Grilled Brussels Sprouts

Yes, there were!  Now, I know that brussels sprouts are vegetables that have no gray area - you either love them or you hate them.  We love them, and the weekend breaking in of our new grill included grilled brussels sprouts and boy were they good!  The grill seems like it will be a perfect one for us, and I'm guessing we'll get our money's worth out of it easily before the summer is over.

Isn't it funny how childhood can or can not influence how you feel about food?  Growing up, brussels sprouts were a rare treat, because they must have cost more than most other vegetables, even if frozen.  So they only showed up occasionally, and it meant that whatever else we were having for dinner was raised a level, as it were.  Now of course, you can get fresh brussels sprouts pretty easily at a farmer's market, as well as still in the frozen section but I still think of them as a treat. 

It was a lovely weekend weather-wise and so I did my best to be outside when I could.  Hamlet got a lot of walks, and I spent hours each day in the garden reading and just enjoying that it was nice enough to be outside.  Yesterday, on our walk, we ran into my friend Lisa, the owner of Hidden River Yarns, and so I got a chance to sit and talk to her for a while when she was having her coffee and a bagel at a sidewalk cafe.  And that was really nice.  She just recently re-opened her shop, but only with limited hours and occupancy and 4 days a week.  So far, it's gone OK she said, and she said it's a whole lot easier than when she had to move all of her inventory to her apartment so she could still ship things online when nothing could be physically open!  Needless to say, she didn't do as well as she would have if the shop had been open, but she said online sales at least kept things going.  I was glad to hear that.

I finished my Down the Shore Shawl yesterday, and it is blocking as I write this.  Boy did that turn out to be a HUGE sucker!  I'll have an FO post sometime this week.

I have also been meaning to share this with all of you.  I know that a lot of people who read this blog participate in Summer Book Bingo.  Well, here's another type of bingo card that is particularly relevant right now.


Just thought I'd share, for any interested parties.

And I suppose that's all for today.  This week is supposed to be nice for the next few days, and then the 90s and humidity arrive, so I'm gonna try to enjoy the good stuff while I can.  I hope your week goes well!

12 June 2020

Five Favorites for This Friday

First of all, thank you so much for your kind comments yesterday.  I appreciate that you agree that I should do my thing even if others somehow find it offensive.  I was also reminded of something my mother used to tell us - if someone makes a point to tell you how good/smart/wonderful/whatever they are, and you are not, they are the ones with the problem.  I appreciate that being brought back to the front of my brain.

It's been a long time since I've done this kind of post (according to imprecise search skills, the last was December 2019) so let's give it a try.  Here are five things from the last week that pleased me.

1.  The grill we ordered for cooking outside in the garden arrived, AND the weather is nice today and is supposed to be nice through the weekend.  That means we can try it out sooner rather than later. 

2.  I get true amusement out of people who try to deliver a burning insult, but it fails for one reason or another.   Case in point: One of the people who left a rude comment told me that my blog posts about knitting and recipes proved I was "retarted."  OK, I must admit that it took me way too long to figure out what they meant to say, but nonetheless.  I was tempted to write back and tell them that I thought they were "a looser," but figured it would be lost on them.

3.  This amuses me every single time I see it.


4.  Yesterday on the deck, we noticed that our friend the Sunbathing Blue Jay had returned.  OK, it's probably not the same bird over all of these years, but every summer, we notice a blue jay on our deck in the hot sun, lying on its side, with one wing extended.  And every year the first time we see it, we think that there is a dead blue jay on the deck.  Then we move or make a noise and it stands up, ruffles its feathers and flies away.  That in and of itself is amusing, but the funniest thing is how it drives the cats NUTS.  They sit there, tensed and staring at it through the screen, like they have some great plan.  Then when the bird stands up, they almost have a heart attack.

5.  We re-watched "Waiting for Guffman" this week, and OMG I love that movie!  It's so ridiculous, and some of the lines - and the delivery - are hilarious.  I think we all know someone who is just like at least a couple of the characters.

What about you?  Have you had anything make you happy, or smile, or laugh this week?  Let me know in the comments.

And have a good weekend!

11 June 2020

Interesting (Well, At Least to Me)

Hello all - I hope this finds you doing well.  I considered not posting for a while, since I have received some really rude and hurtful comments after my last couple of posts.  They were from people who were angry that I was posting "recipes and knitting" when the world was falling apart, which apparently proved that I a complete racist and don't care about oppression.  Needless to say, I deleted those comments, because a) it is my blog and I don't have to give others a forum for hate even if they are accusing me of such, and b) the comments were from people I have never ever heard from before and were in no way constructive.  So though my first thought was to retreat for a while, I have decided that instead, I will go forward doing my thing.  Because that's what I do in the rest of my life, and my blog is part of that.

Moving on, I decided to participate in Three on Thursday this week.  I thought I would share three things from the past few days that particularly caught my attention.

1.  This is the one I am most personally invested in and that makes me so proud.  Rosemary Ketchum was elected to the city council in my home town and in my home state.  I love that this story will make some people realize that West Virginia has a lot going for it, and not everyone there fits the stereotype that most have.  (There are plenty of those types there, but you know what?  I've found them everywhere I've ever lived, so geography is not necessarily the main influence.)  Ms. Ketchum attended the same college that The Tim and I graduated from (granted much later than us and when we went there it was called Wheeling College ... Wheeling Jesuit University came much later), and it's nice to feel a connection with her even if I was not able to cast my vote for her.

2.  The other day, a person posted this video on Twitter, with the caption "This is an act of war."  Which made me laugh, but then I watched it and well, I had to agree.  I'm sharing it because even if I never made a cup of tea in my life, I would somehow know that this just isn't quite the way to do it.  I will qualify this by saying that in dire straits, I have used a microwave to heat water for tea (for instance, when visiting my one sister who doesn't really drink tea), but the rest of the system was particularly appalling to me.

3.  Here's an interesting article about elevators and people returning to work or going places that have large numbers of people going in and out all day. I will admit that I had not given it a lot of thought since I am still home, but it will be interesting to see what and how much is done at my workplace.

And that's that.  I hope the rest of your day goes well.

09 June 2020

Recipe: Quick Vegetable Hash Skillet Dinner

Hello all - I've decided that today I will share one of my favorite recipes with you.  It's not difficult, but it does take a bit of planning ahead.  This falls into the category of comfort food in our house.  Granted, because our house does not get that cool and comfy in the summer, we tend to skip making this when the heat and humidity are in full swing, but if your house cools down better this could definitely be a year-round dish.

******

Quick Vegetable Hash Skillet Dinner

Ingredients:

2 potatoes, chopped and parboiled
2 carrots, chopped and parboiled
1 T. natural coarse salt
1 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced (more if you love garlic!)
1 onion, sliced
1 red or green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 tsp. turmeric
Pinch red chili powder (cayenne can be substituted)
1 can black beans, drained
4 cups chopped kale

Instructions:

Bring a pot of water to boil and add a teaspoon of natural coarse salt.  Add chopped potatoes and carrots and boil until just cooked ( 8-12 minutes).  Strain and set aside until needed. 

Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat.  Add garlic and saute until starting to lightly brown.  Add onions, bell pepper, turmeric, chili powder, and a pinch of salt, and continue to saute until starting to soften (about 5 minutes)

Add parboiled potatoes and carrots, another pinch of salt, and a splash more of olive oil, if you like.  Spread the vegetables out evenly on the bottom of the skillet and cook until they start to brown, then toss.  Spread evenly again, and cook until they start to brown, and the potatoes are nicely carmelized.  (You can turn up the heat if the process seems to be taking too long, but watch everything so it doesn't burn.)

Add black beans, and washed and chopped greens, and stir well.  Add a pinch of salt and some black pepper and continue to cook until the greens are wilted and cooked.

Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste.  Add fresh tomato and a splash of fresh lime and give skillet a shake.

Serve while still hot.  (4 good-sized servings)

* This really doesn't take long - maybe half an hour all together. 
*  If kale isn't your favorite, you can substitute spinach, broccoli rabe, or just about any other green and leafy vegetable.
*  The recipe I adapted this from said that if you are trying to eat low-carb, you can substitute cauliflower for the potatoes.
*  That recipe also showed it served with a fried egg on top; I'm not a big egg person, so I left that out, but The Tim likes it that way.
*  You can really mix-and-match vegetables and spices according to the things you like.  I've done various substitutions based on what we had or did not have, and have never been disappointed.


Let me know if you give this a try, and how it turned out.  We think it's definitely a keeper!

08 June 2020

This Particular Monday is for an FO Post

This weekend was vastly different than last.  The protests continued, with more people and more meaning, and they were completely peaceful, which was good all the way around.  The weather was OK on Saturday, though a bit humid, but Sunday was PERFECTION. 

It was also different because I finished one of my projects!  Recently I showed you this:


I'd been working on it much longer than I'd wanted to, and though I was pleased with the result, I was annoyed that it took so long.  I've been doing pretty well with my self-imposed-in-my-brain plan to knit a pair of socks each month, and May was nearly over.  I decided that instead of switching up on my projects somewhat equally, I would give sock #2 more attention. 


Project:  Sousa Socks
Pattern:  adapted by me from the Stars and Stripes Socks, by the Sockguy (from the long ago Sockknitters listserv)
Yarn:  Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock, colorways Navy and Glory Red
Needles:  US size 1
Modifications:  The whole project was a modification!  (Also, the colors in the first photo are actually closer to how they look in real life.)
Notes:  This pattern and kit was from a very long ago offering and had been in my stash since not quite 1776 ... seriously, though it has been there a LONG time.  I started following the pattern as written, and it seemed so fiddly to me that I just gave up.  But then I decided to put my own spin on it, and see what happened.  I named them the Sousa Socks because John Philip Sousa wrote "Stars and Stripes Forever," and I was still trying to go with the theme.  I kept the stitch and row counts of the original pattern, and just changed the combination so that it was much less fiddly. 

I really do like the finished socks.  The heel construction was new to me, so that was also interesting, and in some ways much quicker than the regular heel and gusset construction, though it ends up looking much the same.  The second sock, needless to say, knit up much more quickly, since I wasn't starting from scratch with what I was doing.  They will probably be way too warm to wear on July 4th, but maybe they will work for Labor Day some year??

This is only the second time I've ever knit with Lorna's Laces yarn, and this is old - when Lorna herself was still the dyer.  It is soft and lovely to work with. 

Now onto another pair.  I'm voting for plain vanilla this time.  😜

05 June 2020

Catsup? Ketchup? Or ...

Catch up?  (For the record, I'm a "ketchup" person when it comes to the name of the condiment.  Because you needed to know that.)

Anyway, let's have a little bit of a Friday catch up.

Here's one of the reasons that I find my weekly work department Zoom meetings draining.  Yesterday, we were discussing projects to work on when we return to work.  Our archivist suggested that it might be interesting to work on an exhibit where we not just display the portraits we have of founders and other significant people in our institution's history, but look into their lives such as did they own slaves, did they find other people than whites to be lesser, etc.  Our boss agreed that was a good idea, and then one of the others in the dept (the one who went HR because I kept saying "Good morning" to her every day and she didn't want me to talk to her), said, "Well, as long as only myself, ___, and ___ work on it.  Anyone over 40 can't possibly understand the issues here, and can only be racist."  And of course the boss said nothing, because he is extremely fond of this person, and will do ANYTHING to avoid any level of conflict at all.  [screams into void]

The other morning, Hamlet really really really needed to go out for his early morning bathroom walk before our curfew expired.  So I was getting dressed, and Hamlet went over to The Tim for some attention.  The Tim said, "Be careful, Hammy, 'cause it's still curfew.  If they start shooting rubber bullets, be sure to stand behind your ma so you won't get hit."  Again, he is a regular laff riot.

We are both excited because we ordered a new portable grill for use in the garden.  A few years back, we had a small one that used propane gas, but neither of us were very comfortable with it.  Now that our garden is fixed up again (well, OK it's a mess now, but we can still use a good part of it), we wanted to find another one.  We ended up ordering this one, and it should arrive today or tomorrow.  It uses charcoal, but frankly not a lot, and we just could not afford one that used bio-pellets, which are better for the environment.  Anyway, we already have more plans of what we'll grill than what is likely to actually happen!

Today Philadelphia and the surrounding counties move into the Yellow phase of the Covid-19 recovery.  Not much is likely to change for us right away, but at least it comes with the ability to do some things a bit more freely, and hopefully some businesses can begin to start to open again.  I just hope that people will still be safe - too many seem to think that since thousands aren't dying every day, that the whole thing is over and there's no reason to be cautious anymore.

Today marks one year since we had to say goodbye to our baby Jack.


It was and still is one of the worst days ever, and very often, it still feels like it was just a few minutes ago.  We have decided that Jack is probably ready for us to expand the family, so will be on the lookout for a kitty who needs us.  I'm sure all of you will be among the first to know if anything changes.  😊  In the meantime, hug and kiss your family - furry and otherwise - and if you think to do it, give a thought or prayer for our Jack today, and/or drink a toast to him.  He truly was the sweetest and the best.  Love you baby boy, forever.  💕

I follow the Awkward Family Photos account on Facebook and today there was one of the best photos ever.  The caption said, "This is our daughter's preschool picture.  I think the photographer thought the addition of a flower would make it look innocent and sweet."  Um ...


The Tim and I both laughed until we cried!  This is one of the funniest preschool pictures ever.  And I'm glad that the person submitting it thought so too. 

That's it for now.  I hope all of you are doing well, and that you have the best weekend you can.  See you next week!

04 June 2020

May You Live in Interesting Times

That is (supposedly) an old Chinese proverb.  And if it is, well, this week alone has fulfilled the "interesting" part, even if not in the way we might all want "interesting" to be.  Since today is Three on Thursday, I thought I'd share some recent things (two international, one local) that have meant that life is way more interesting than it ever needed to be.  EVER.

1.  There we all were, going along, living with the stay-at-home orders due to the Covid-19 virus.  Fortunately, it seemed that in a lot of places (including Pennsylvania), things were on the downward turn as far as the infamous curve was concerned.  Even Philadelphia is/was supposed to get to the Yellow Level of reopening starting tomorrow.  "Interesting," right?

2.  And then in Minneapolis, a black man named George Floyd was murdered by a human POS who was on the police force (along with three of his colleagues), who felt that it made him look powerful, forceful, macho and who knows what else.  And that was the last straw in a series of incredibly more frequent and awful events.  A peaceful protest here took an extremely sideways turn, resulting in looting, fires, and vandalism.  There have been/are subsequent protests, which have been mostly peaceful - well at least the protesters were peaceful - except for one with tear gas (grrrrr) and one where some white nationalists showed up in one neighborhood with bats to use against protesters.  Most places of business in the neighborhood are still boarded up and closed,  and curfew is still happening.  "Interesting" but for all the worst reasons.  Though hopefully this version of the word will lead to actual, humane change.  Here in Philadephia, one symbol of police brutality and racism has already been removed, and we have been working for that for years, so at least there a small glimmer. 

3.  Next up - this:


This is a photo that a local viewer sent to a TV station showing the approach of a derecho yesterday afternoon.  This thing was brutal.  At our house alone, we lost a tree, a huge chunk of ivy was ripped off the side of the house, and power went out briefly (some are still stuck with that last part - fortunately, in the city, it came back on within 5 minutes).  Upon closer inspection, the chunk of ivy that fell landed on top of our viburnum bush and the flowers I'd planted in the garden.  So, RIP to those.  I'm glad we'll be able to get rid the ivy (once The Tim gets the small chainsaw he ordered), but sad that the sweet-smelling bush and my flowers are gone.  Especially since everything had been doing so well this year.  But WAIT - that's not enough!  Last night we had a tornado-force storm and were told to take shelter.  Fortunately, nothing worse happened and it moved along pretty quickly.  But between the two storms, our neighborhood looks pretty darn sad.  How "interesting."

I don't know about you, but I'm ready to go back to dull and boring.

01 June 2020

Time to Regroup

June 1st - here we are, in the month that separates the first part of the year from the second part.  And this year, as months have blended into each other more weirdly than ever before, I think plenty of us have been thinking of June as somehow a bellweather of how we might be going forward.  Some places are slowly reopening, lots of places are seeing significant drops in new Covid-19 cases, and of course for many who are not me, it also means that the summer season is really getting started.  So it can also be a kind of mini-New Year, a chance to start fresh and maybe make it to the end of the year with better results.

Today in Philadelphia, it won't be that easy.  As you may or may not know, things exploded here over the weekend.  What started as a peaceful protest memorializing the police killing of George Floyd, turned into two days and nights of heavy duty destruction and violence.  Things are extremely tenuous right now.  The fires are either out or under control, but if the wind blows in a certain direction you can still smell smoke.  The helicopters are finally gone (at least for now - they kept coming and going all through Saturday and Sunday), and there are fewer siren sounds.  Curfew has been lifted for this morning.  The National Guard has arrived, and everyone is hoping that it will not be needed.

People have been injured, including some in law enforcement.  The property damage is considerable, and a couple of buildings that housed retail in Center City will have to be demolished because they were so damaged from fires, meaning that some people are also losing their office and/or living space.  After the cleanup, who knows what places will reopen or decide to rebuild?  Everything has already been closed and the future uncertain because of the pandemic, and I'm sure for some, this will be the point where the break comes.

It's been sad.  It's been scary.  It's been frustrating.  It's clear that serious and systemic change has to happen, though that's been clear for a long time.  But of course there are already people seeing only what they wanted to see, and saying that this proves that "those people" only want handouts or they resort to violence.  "Those people" of course meaning black Americans.  In spite of the fact that there were plenty of lily white people taking advantage of looting.  In spite of the fact that black Americans and other people of color have been facing disproportionate levels of income. healthcare, and pretty much everything else that is easily available and often not even realized by those of us who have pale skin.

I realized over the weekend that a bumper sticker that I've seen a lot over the years was actually a lot smarter than I'd ever realized.  Yes, a bumper sticker. 


When people are treated justly in all ways - legally, financially, socially, etc. - then we are saying that no one has to be like everyone else to lead the life they deserve.  The world will never ever be perfect, and none of us will ever be 100% happy, but if we are all treated with humanity and dignity and have the same opportunities, there are fewer reasons to look at things as being Us vs. Them for anyone in any situation.

So if you want to help the world and your community to regroup, and you want to feel like you are starting the second part of this year in a way that can only improve it, work for justice - however small, however local, let it start to ripple through the water of our world.  Unless we can all afford our own planet, we are here together.  And if you don't think that we all deserve dignity, kindness, and respect, then every single bit of this is on you.

It's June 1st - take a deep breath, regroup, and decide to move forward in the best way you can. 

And on Tuesday, November 3, 2020, make sure to vote so that our country will be able to regroup and move forward

29 May 2020

End of May Friday Funnies

The last Friday in May is upon us - I remember as a kid, this was the final full month of school, since we were usually out for the summer vacation by mid-June.  The end of May meant Memorial Day on actual Memorial Day, talk of final exams, and also the promise of the school picnic, which was always a highlight since it meant we got into the pool at the local park not just for free (as always), but we had tickets for 3 free snacks once there - now THAT was living!  I remember spending way too much time trying to figure out what my free snacks would be, since when we went to the pool otherwise, we never had money to get snacks, so other than the water fountains, that was it.  One given was that I would get a Lance Cake (chocolate covered of course), which at least to me, was a rare treat. 


I have a feeling that today it would make me gag, but then it was perfection!  😋

Anyway, I wanted to end the month with some things to make us laugh, since the world is a sad place right now.  I always think that even something just makes you smile for a minute, that is a gift in times like these.  So I hope you will find something to do that for you below.

First up, I'll bet you haven't given this a thought during quarantine:



I just think this one is hilarious - I think because I can almost hear the person at the podium saying this ...



This just plain amuses me:


And this last one is so ridiculous, I laughed until I cried.  


Have the best weekend that you can.  See you in June!

28 May 2020

In Which I Wonder and Rant

Hi all - Thank you for the kind comments about my Sousa Sock HO yesterday.  I'm really pleased with how it turned out, even if I was cursing it to the moon at the beginning! 

Today I will be spending two straight hours on Zoom calls, which means that I will likely need the rest of the day to recover, so I thought I'd join in on Three on Thursday now, while I still have a somewhat functional brain.  

Here are three things that have been in my brain lately, for no good reason.

1.  Why are there so many shades of pink that I like, and others that make me stabby?  For instance, Karen showed two knitting projects of hers that were in different shades of pink, pretty much at different levels of that color.  I found both of them beautiful.  But then other times I see pink and I ask myself  WTF with that color?  Maybe it has to do with certain shades being "representative" of girlishness?  I don't know, but I've thought about it way too much.  And now, possibly, so can you!

2.  Should I join Postcrossing?  I do enjoy getting real mail that is not a bill or a flyer.  And I do enjoy writing letters and post cards.  I go back and forth on this.  I could see it being like most things, where my interest ebbs and flows, and I'm not sure if that is fair to anyone else who has joined.

3.  What kind of person isn't somehow affected by knowing that over 100,000 Americans - plus thousands more worldwide - have died from Covid 19?  And I'm not just talking about You-Know-Who and his Band of Evil, I mean regular people who somehow think that going to the gym is more important.  Or those who are endlessly whining about having to cancel their vacations to Europe?  If I hear one more person say, "Well, I know a lot of people have died, and others are sick, but I had to ask for a refund for our trip to Spain, and it's the worst thing that has happened to us," I will scream.  Because really if that is the worst thing that has happened to you - now or EVER - good for you.  I realize people are sad and upset, but over 100,000+ people have died for no good reason.  Get over yourselves.  Geez.

OK, that rant is over (for now, at least).  To lighten things up before signing off, I'm sharing this that I saw yesterday on Facebook that made me laugh out loud.  I hope it will amuse you as well.

27 May 2020

Slow Progress on Two Fronts

Hello - I hope all of you had a good weekend, and for those of us in the U.S., I hope your weekend was a good one without going anywhere that included crowds and acting like an eejit.  Our weekend was really lovely, and the best part was that we actually sat in the garden and ate our picnic dinner on Monday!  It was nice that a) it was cleaned up enough out there to be able to enjoy it, and b) it was not hot and humid, but a lovely day and evening.  It was kind of weird to be home, since we are usually at my sister's, but we made the best of it.

I even pre-ordered and paid for sticky buns from a bakery in the neighborhood for us to have on Saturday morning as a treat, since we would be around.  They were heavenly, and when I picked them up and brought them home, they were even still WARM!!  It doesn't get much better than that.

Since we were at home and not doing anything other than entertaining ourselves, I did manage to get some knitting and reading accomplished.  I am still reading Mansfield Park and enjoying it quite a bit.  Just enough amusement for me at the moment.  One of the things I enjoy about Jane Austen's books is the way that she can concoct a sentence in a very proper way and still let you know that a particular character is ridiculous in any way.

But I did make a good deal of knitting progress, and have a HO to share with you:


Ta da!  I finished knitting the first of my Sousa Socks!  This is the one that had to have the end of the foot and toe redone, since I'd dropped stitches and hadn't realized it until I was ready to tie the last stitch off after doing the Kitchener stitch.  Ugh.  But It wasn't that much, and I'm really really pleased with how it looks - plus it fits, which I was hoping would be the case, but then again, when you are not too great at colorwork, it can be a crapshoot.

I have the second one well underway, and hope it won't take as long as the first one did, since I know what I want to do this time around.

As for my other projects - the sweater and the shawl - I am thisclose to finishing them, so hopefully they will join the ranks of FOs soon.  

This is my post for Unraveled Wednesday - go and see what else Kat and the others are up to!

25 May 2020

Memorial Day 2020

Today we pause to remember those who joined the angels when giving their last full measure of devotion.


"We take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude"
-- Cynthia Ozick

21 May 2020

The Holiday Weekend Beckons

It surprised me the other day when I realized that the Memorial Day weekend was upon us (at least for those of us in the U.S.)!  Usually today would be a busy day for me, finishing up at work since I would be taking Friday off, and then making sure that the pet sitter was lined up, packing was done, etc.  The flurry and sometimes panic of an upcoming weekend away, you know? 

But here we are anyway, with a big holiday weekend and no where to go.  Since today is Three on Thursday, I thought I'd share three things we usually do and three things we'll be doing instead this year.

For those who don't really know what I'm talking about, usually every Memorial Day weekend, we go to my sister's house in WV, where most of the family and tons of friends gather on one of the days for a big picnic.  It's one of the highlights of the year for everyone, and kicks off summer in a great way (even to me, not a summer fan).

1.  Usually - we spend the couple of weeks prior to our weekend away collecting things we want to take with us (games, gifts, etc.) or, in the day or so before we would leave, baking cookies or some other treat to take along.

Instead - we have been deciding what we want to fix for ourselves, and if we want our "holiday" meal to be on the holiday itself (Monday) or one of the other weekend days.  Not nearly as much fun, or quite as anticipatory.

2.  Usually - we decide ahead of time which friends we would like to be sure to see while we're home and see if they will be at the picnic or if we'll get together separately, or both.  A lot of people are only around one of the days of the weekend since they have other plans, so we have to try and get a chance to see them when it works for their schedule.  We also decide what games we want to play at the picnic, and choose teams if appropriate (I still get chosen last.  Some things never change!).

Instead - we have planned a "party" Zoom meeting on Sunday afternoon with most of the family.  This way, at least we'll get to see the ones we most want to see and catch up a bit.

3.  Usually - the menu includes so much variety, that you can easily spend the day trying everything there and not try it all.  Everyone brings something, and all the family provides the basics.  Even if you are a vegetarian as we are, there is an enormous choice of goodies.  Hamlet, and Dug before him, think it's the best day of their lives because everyone is giving them food!  Both of them have been known to park themselves in one place for most of the day - next to the grill!  We also spend a large portion on the morning of the picnic decorating the yard and setting things up.

Instead - the choices will be much more limited, Hamlet will get a *doggie* treat, and we'll just eat in our own garden, ourselves.  That's already set up.

So, it will be a nice weekend anyway.  But a whole lot quieter, a whole lot calmer, and not quite as funny or noisy or silly. 

On the plus side - DEFINITELY not as much clean-up. 

Though I'd trade for that happily at this point.  😊

My niece Amanda sent me this photo yesterday, which is appropriate for today's post.  Here is our sweet Dug the Doodle Dog, taking a break after "helping" us get my sister's yard ready and decorated the day of the big picnic.  I love this photo so much, I decided to share.


Whatever you do, have a good holiday weekend - or regular weekend, for those of you elsewhere - and stay safe!

20 May 2020

Just a Bit

As in, I did have to do some unravelling on a knitting project.  Not a lot, but just a bit.  I was working along on a pair of socks, and *thought* I had finished the toe, but just as I was about to tuck in the last stitch, I noticed that in reality, I'd lost a bunch of stitches further down.  Sigh.  So it was time to undo the toe and complete it another day.  Hopefully next time I'll pay more attention ... 

Sorry I have no photo - but I promise one soon!  I forgot to take a photo, and I know that if I get up to do it now, I'll see something shiny and forget all about this post.  Unfortunately, I probably won't be knitting for a day or two.  I have been getting our garden ready and cleaning things up, and my right elbow is currently screaming at me.  So I am giving it a break from doing much for a couple of days.  Right now I have one of those heat strips on it and it feels very nice.  

On to reading.  I have been reading up a storm, I gotta tell you!  Today I'm starting this book:


I've had it for a long time, but decided I wanted to finally read it now.  I think I saw the movie they made of it years ago, but it's likely that most of it has gone the way of so many things that have left my brain for the ether of the universe.  I think Jane will be a good companion right now.

If you want to see what others are reading and making, check out the Unraveled Wednesday posts today at Kat's blog.

On This Day in History:  The Tim and I graduated from college 42 years ago.  I always like to remind The Tim that I graduated first in our class.  He likes to then remind me that we graduated in alphabetical order ...

18 May 2020

Just Go Along With This for Now

This was one of those busy weekends when I actually did a lot of stuff not just for myself, but around the house, and none of it is noticeable.  You know what I mean - you put things away, or spend some time on an ongoing project, and you're happy that it was done, but no one else would ever know?  Oh well, I know and that counts!

One thing I did "accomplish" that I can share with you is a couple of photos.  On my previous laptop, I used Irfanview to edit photos, and it was fairly straightforward and we got along very well.  Turns out that Irfanview doesn't work with Chromebook (of course it doesn't why should it, right?), so I had to find something else to try.  So after a ton of trial and error, I have these two photos to share, and though they are fine, I'm not completely happy with either of them, based on how I could have done them before.  I'm sure I'm the only one it bothers, though.

First up, do you remember the counted cross-stitch of the honeybee I finished last fall?  We got a frame for it, and nothing happened with that right away, and once the holidays arrived, forget it.  I finally got myself together enough to frame it a few weeks ago, and early last week The Tim hung it for me.


The reason this photo is at an angle, is because it is hanging above the stairwell where you go from the second floor down to the first floor, and this was as good a shot as I could get.  The closest that this comes to the actual gold shade of the frame is near the top left corner.  But I love the way it all turned out, and it makes me happy to see it whenever I'm heading downstairs.

Next up is one of the photos from Hamlet's birthday party.  One of his gifts was a new bed (the one we had belonged to Dug, and between the two dogs using it as well as the cats, a new one was in order).  As you can see, it was quite a hit.


Hamlet has even had the chance to use it once or twice since then ... actually for about the first week, he was only lucky to get next to it.  We keep telling him that he doesn't have to do the cats' bidding, that his head is bigger than both of their bodies put together, but nonetheless, here we are.

(Both of these photos took HOURS to get to look like this.  Sigh.  Good thing I have a lot of time to spend these days!)

I also spent some time starting to wash my winter sweaters to put away.  Though we have had some cool nights and early mornings, and there were a couple of days last week where the mornings in the high 30s/low 40s, I've decided that since this coming weekend is Memorial Day weekend, we're not likely to get many more - if any - of those.

This week I hope to get to work getting the garden more cleaned up.  The Tim got started with some of the big stuff, but I want to finish and we want to get some plants for there and the planters in front of our house.  That's the big thing I'd like to accomplish, but there are also a bunch of smaller things that are on my mental list as well.  Needless to say, we won't be traveling this year for Memorial Day, but I'm hoping that if we have some nice weather that we could have a little picnic in the garden if things are enough in order.

That's really about it.  My knitting projects continue, a bit slower than before since one of them in particular makes my one elbow uncomfortable, so I don't spend as much time knitting.  I'm hoping once that project is finished, the discomfort will also be gone.  I've done some reading, and am also catching up on some movies and TV shoes that we have had hanging around but never got around to watching yet.

I hope your weekend was OK, even if not exciting.  Don't forget to wash your hands, wear a mask, and stay home!

15 May 2020

Well It Was Nice to Have Hope For a While

Again, I am not claiming my life is more difficult or tragic than people with real problems, so don't even bother to make those kinds of comments, because you know what?  I'll just delete them, so you've wasted your time and mine.

Looks like the hard drive from my old computer is really and truly dead.  So a lot of documents and photos are just plain gone.  And I have to tell you that it breaks my heart, because since I don't have a photo printer, it's not like I have printouts of the ones that mean the most to me.  True, some of them are on the blog or Instagram, etc., but that's not the same.  Some of them were of people and pets I will never have a chance to see again that I did not print out and were there long before social media or my blog existed.  Some of the documents were things I used regularly to help with paying bills, or knowing who to contact when issues came up both financially, or with repairs, etc.  You may say, well why didn't I back them up.  I did, but that drive died a few months ago and I had not been able to get a new one yet, I thought due to finances but finances mean nothing now when no one has any extra money anyway.

OK, so my pity party is over (at least here).  I have my memories, I have a few old printed photos that are now more valuable than ever, and hopefully I can recreate some of the documents if I can find the info all over again.  Life goes on and I will too.

In news about my Chromebook, I did get photos loaded from my camera into my Google Drive cloud or whatever.  However, I have not yet figured out how to edit anything, and sadly, nothing is "automatically" sorted the way it was (or that it was set up for me) on my old computer, so I know some of what I will be doing this weekend!

I do appreciate that so many of you agreed that The Tim and Hamlet were the ones to be blamed for my previous laptop's demise.  Because let's face it, the world is better when you can blame someone other than yourself, right?  😉

I hope all of you are hanging in there OK.  I particularly hope that none of you are part of the groups ignoring social distancing and showing up places where you shouldn't be without masks!  Someone on Twitter posted "If it's 'weak' to wear a mask, do these same people not use a potholder when taking something out of a hot oven?"  Good one, no?

Finally, here is a cartoon that a friend posted on Facebook that I thought all of you might find amusing - I know it pleased me when I saw it, both the words and the illustration.


Have the best weekend you can, and I'll see you next week, maybe even having figured out how to edit some photos so I can share them!